Yeah, I know- "it won't happen to my teen" - same thing I said.
BUT IT DID. She took her own life.
And yet, there are MANY reports of teens who have great relationships wit their parents, family, school, good friends, community and on and on – real contributors, etc.
And all of a sudden, they end it.
LISTEN. Listen, listen, listen, listen!! Stop telling.
That’s not what a possibly emotionally illogical person needs!
You realized that years ago when you fell in love with the wrong person.
In sales, people buy on emotion, not on logic.
The golden door into a teen will always be LISTENING.
Recognize, accept, VALIDATE every feeling they share and then ASK ABOUT IT.
ASK, DON'T TELL!
“tell me more”
“tell me about that”
“please tell me what made [makes] you think that]
“help me to better understand”
DO NOT LAPSE INTO CORRECTING THEIR THINKING.
Let's respect that! Let's listen and listen and listen deeper.
As said previously, listening is the greatest gift you can give.
I am fully aware that this isn’t practically possible, but I came to the belief that the only real solution was to literally hold her hands 24-7.
· LISTEN, deeply.
· Ask gentle, non-invasive follow-up questions.
· Validate feelings they express even if they make no sense to you or are totally opposite of “the reality” you see.
· Watch for signs – changes in behavior or patterns.
· Love them deeply and remind them often.